Saturday, September 30, 2006


Taipei, Sept. 30 (CNA) Taiwan's only film festival devoted exclusively to showcasing the work of women directors will pay tribute to successful female artists this year, organizers said Saturday.

The 2006 Women Make Waves (WMW) Film Festival will show 200 films representing 33 countries from Oct. 13- 27 at Shin Kong Cineplex, Taipei, the Taiwan Women's Film Association (TWFA) announced at a press conference.

"The film festival this year is a salute to all hard-working and successful female artists in every artform, because the event looks at itself as a movement-like film festival with a social responsibility," curator Huang Tsui-hua said.

All films have been categorized into different themes, with "Women and the Arts" as the focus of the two-week event, she said.

Distinguished writers Virginia Woolf, Marguerite Duras and actress Audrey Hepburn will be honored and remembered in a tribute entitled "Portraits of Outstanding Female Artists."

The other main theme of the festival -- "The Vitality of Hybrid Cinema" -- focuses on presenting interdisciplinary experimental short films by female directors from Europe, America and Asia.

Also to be screened are short animated works and films on gender-related issues and the underprivileged. Collections of outstanding international and Taiwanese films will be shown as well.

As a film festival that always pays attention to avant-garde work, it's no surprise this year's opening film, "Angel Cycle," is an experimental one. It was directed by two Greek women and comprised of four short films, Huang said.

The WMW film festival, established in 1993 by female director Huang Yu-shan, is the first women's film festival in Asia and the only one of its kind in Taiwan.


Taipei, Sept. 29 (CNA) Relations between Taiwan and Japan will remain the same and undergo few changes under new Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, a Japanese academic predicted Friday in Taipei.

Political stability, the main reason behind Koizumi's successful economic reforms, is probably what Taiwan is lacking right now, opined Makoto Sakurai, director of the Center for International Finance at Japan's MSK Research Institute.

Abe, who won the premiership in a landslide election Sept. 26 and took over the helm from Junichiro Koizumi, is expected to maintain the same friendly and stable relationship with Taiwan as Koizumi had, Sakurai said in a speech focusing on the impact on Taiwan of Japan's new government.

"Abe has been long-known for his pro-Taiwan beliefs, just like his late grandfather Nobusuke Kishi, Japan's prime minister from 1957 to 1960. And he played critical and helpful roles in former Taiwan president Lee Teng-hui's two visits to Japan," said Sakurai.

Taiwan will probably be put in an uncomfortable position some time in the future though, as Abe seeks to improve Japan's relations with China and South Korea, he added.

"There is no need for Taiwan to worry, because Japan is very concerned with stability in the Taiwan Strait and has made a clear and definite commitment to the U.S.-Japan security treaty on the issue," he said.

Sakurai also offered his observations on Taiwanese politics and economics, saying that stability is Taiwan's priority at this moment if it wants to maintain sustainable economic growth.

Japan also experienced a highly unstable period of ten different prime ministers in ten years, just like what Taiwan is experiencing right now, he said. Koizumi's five-year term couldn't come at a better time, as Japan's economy started to recover after 2001 under Koizumi's massive reform initiatives.

"I think that stability is what Taiwan needs right now. A stable environment in Taiwan is also what Japan and U.S. like to see, " Sakurai said.


Taipei, Sept. 29 (CNA) The ongoing anti-president protest and the so-called "red ocean" sit-in led by veteran politician Shih Ming-teh is reminiscent of China's Cultural Revolution in the 1960s, an exiled Chinese democracy activist said Friday.

"It hurt me so bad [when I saw the protest] ... I wonder which way Taiwan is heading toward: peace and stability or hatred and violence?" said Cao Changqing, a Chinese democracy advocate and political commentator now living in New York.

"And it shocked me that there are so many similarities between the two activities," Cao said in a seminar organized by Taiwan Society Herald, a media watch group.

Both the current protest and the Cultural Revolution, which was launched by then-Communist Party Chairman Mao Zedong in 1966 to regain control of the party, replaced the rule of law with moral standards. And morality is a vague word, said Cao, who was a grade school student when the Revolution broke out and experienced it

Morality is important, Cao said, but "it takes the soft power of morality and the hard power of the law to create a well-functioning nation."

They both replaced the system with mass movements as well, resorting to "taking to the streets" instead of the power of votes, he added.

The third similarity is that both activities advocated the power of public opinion, but an irresponsible one.

"The bottom line is that people's freedom of speech and assembly cannot impede others' freedom of political preference. That is what democracy means," he said.

Additionally, Taiwan's media of today look just like China's propaganda media in the days of the Revolution, advocating hatred and violence, Cao said.

"Taiwan is now at a crossroads. But at the end of the day, I'm still confident of Taiwan's democracy and the final choice of Taiwan's people, because Taiwan is already a democratic country," Cao said.


Taipei, Sept. 27 (CNA) To display Taiwan's efforts in Nanotechnology, the Taiwan Nano-X 2006 launched a series of activities from Sept. 27- 29 with scientists, researchers, multinational conglomerates, international and domestic companies participating.

The three-day event comprises the International Nanotechnology Workshop and Business Opportunity Forum, the Taiwan Nano-X Exhibition, the ANF- Education and Talent Cultivation Workshop, the APEC Nanoscale Measurement Technology Forum, and the Global School for Advanced Studies Workshop.

In 2003, the government initiated a six-year national program on Nanoscience and Nanotechnology, a coordinated effort among eight different ministries to promote research and development on the scientific frontier.

Eighty-four exhibitors -- 66 domestic and 18 foreign -- participated in the Taiwan Nano-X Exhibition. Nano application products dominated the exhibition, as more than half of the exhibitors come from that field, organizers said.

Nanotechnology has not only changed the scene of scientific research but has also greatly impacted the economy and society, said Wu Maw-kuen, who is in charge of the nanoscience and nanotechnology development project.

This is why the government spent NT$20 billion on a six-year national program that started in 2003 to make sure Taiwan is not left behind in the global competition as China, Japan, South Korea, the European Union and the United States all started national programs between 2000 and 2002, he said.

According to an estimate by America's National Science Foundation, the global market of nanotechnology application products will reach a trillion U.S. dollars. Taiwan's nanotechnology application is expected to take off in 2008, eyeing a NT$300 billion market.


Taipei, Sept. 27 (CNA) Almost 170 old films from the Japanese colonial era have been preserved and repaired, and are currently being digitalized. The collection is expected to serve as an invaluable resource in historical research, the Council for Cultural Affairs (CCA) said Wednesday.

A special team from Tainan National University of the Arts (TNUA) spent three years repairing the 168 films -- released during the 1930s and 1940s when Japan ruled Taiwan. The collection includes documentaries, dramas, and animation, and are being restored under a program sponsored by the National Museum of Taiwan History

The 70-year-old films were obtained from an antique collector in the southern city of Chiayi in 2003, with each film undergoing a complicated and time-consuming process of examination, repair and digitalization, said TNUA professor Ray Jiing, who headed the special team.

"Taiwan's film history started after the first Sino-Japanese War, when Japanese filmmaker Takamatsu Toyojiro first brought cinema to Taiwan. For most film historians, however, the colonial era is a blank memory," said CCA chairman Chiu Kun-liang.

This is why the films' reproduction -- especially the documentaries -- will be invaluable, as the footage actually shows the streets of Taipei, buildings in Tainan, cherry blossoms in Ali Mountain and what life was like for Taiwan's people 70 years ago, Jiing said.

Most of the documentaries were produced by the Japanese government, which intended to use the films to introduce Taiwan to the Japanese people while serving as Japanese propaganda in Taiwan.

In addition to the films, 135 film licenses were also acquired and repaired. They are also valuable cultural assets because every film license provided detailed information about the film, from its director, cast and crew to the dialogue, Jiing added.

The digitalization of all the films will be completed and available to the public by year's end, Jiing said, and people will be able to watch the films through the NMTH Web site.


Taipei, Sept. 26 (CNA) The American Institute in Taiwan's (AIT's) American Cultural Center (ACC) has introduced an EducationUSA Web site for Taiwan students who are interested in studying in the United States.

According to ACC Director Nicholas Papp, who is responsible for the program, EducationUSA is "designed to provide a one-stop source of unbiased information about opportunities for study in the U.S."

EducationUSA Taiwan advisors provide students with free information on how to make a study plan, choose a school, find financial aid, apply for admission, get a student visa and prepare for departure. The advisors will be available to meet prospective students and their parents at the American Education Fair in Taipei Sept. 30-Oct. 1, in Kaohsiung Oct. 2 and in Taichung Oct. 3.


Taipei, Sept. 26 (CNA) More than 3,500 domestic and foreign participants shared their experiences at an international conference on developing second-generation Internet services Tuesday in Taipei.

The conference on "Web 2.0," one of the hottest topics in the IT world in recent years, invited founders and managers from well-known companies such as flicker, TechCrunch, and Bubbleshare to share their expertise in future Internet trends and development.

"Web 2.0," a phrase coined by O'Reilly Media in 2004, refers to second-generation of innovative Internet-based services -- such as social networking sites and communication tools -- that provide new ways for people to collaborate and share information online.

"The revolutionary Internet application of Web 2.0 has drastically changed the current business competition format and is expected to have a great impact on the development of Taiwan's industries and people's way of life. It's why the Ministry of
Economic Affairs (MOEA) has organized the event," said MOEA vice minister Shih Yen-shiang.

The Internet was a "one-way Web" in 1997 and will become a "two-way Web" in 2007, said Michael Arrington, Founder and CEO of TechCrunch, a highly respected Web 2.0 technology analysis Web site, on the difference between Web 1.0 and Web 2.0.

Regarding the key aspects of Web 2.0, Arrington said it treats the Web as a platform, using data as the driving force. Its architecture is based on participation, has a great deal of network effects and has transformed an era of Web sites into Web services.

Managers from flickr,, and Bubbleshare also briefed the audience on the business model and operations of Web 2.0 services.

Representatives from successful Taiwanese Web 2.0 companies, such as Wretch, iPartment, HemiDemi and PChome Online shared their experience with participants as well.

The two-day conference concludes Wednesday after an invitation-only workshop, which will focus on technology and cooperation opportunities.

Monday, September 25, 2006


Taipei, Sept. 25 (CNA) Taiwan is determined to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the interest of the nation's sustainable development and its responsibility as a member of the international community, an official of Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) said Monday.

Taiwan is not a member of the United Nations and cannot sign the Kyoto Protocol, but Taiwan is determined, prepared and willing to do whatever it takes to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, said Bureau of energy director Yeh Huei-chin at an international conference on the electric power industry's global warming strategies.

Kyoto Protocol is an international treaty on climate change that assigns mandatory targets for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to signatory nations.

"Carbon dioxide reduction is a 'no-regret' policy to Taiwan," she said.

Due to the shortage of domestic resources, more than 98 percent of Taiwan's energy is imported, with 83 percent of Taiwan's energy coming from oil and coal, she said. Thus Taiwan has been in a tough situation which, under the nuclear-free homeland perspective, non-carbon energy is limited to renewable resources.

The first of Taiwan's carbon dioxide mitigation strategies is expanding the usage of natural gas. And it will promote renewable energy, improve energy efficiency and establish a rational energy price mechanism.

In addition to these four strategies, it's also important to legislate a greenhouse gas reduction law and a renewable energy development bill in the legislature, she stressed.

The MOEA has completed the planning program of carbon dioxide reduction technology in 2005. Starting in 2007, the annual budget will be about NT$280 million, she said.


Taipei, Sept. 25 (CNA) An Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) official said Monday in an international conference that the impact of global warming on Taiwan is obvious and can be seen in many ways.

Young Chea-yuan, director-general of the Bureau of Air Quality Protection and Noise Control said in the conference on the electric power industry's global warming strategies that Taiwan currently ranks 22nd globally in terms of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and accounts for 1 percent of global GHG emissions.

The average temperature rise in Taiwan in the last century is between 0.98 degrees Celsius to 1.43 degrees Celsius, which is higher than the global average of 0.6 degrees Celsius, Young said, adding that the highest temperature in Taipei (37.4 degrees Celsius) and Yilan (38.8 degrees Celsius) are both 70-year records.

The average annual numbers of consecutive dry days was about four days in 1950, increasing to 10 days in 2004, indicating less rainfall, he said.

The number of typhoons hitting Taiwan has remained stable, he went on, but added that the intensity has shown an increasing trend.

Taiwan's insurance losses due to typhoons and floods were NT$27 million in 2003, skyrocketing to almost NT$1.3 billion in 2005.

Offshore fishing and ecological phenomenon like bird diversity have also been affected, he said.

Taiwan has not signed the Kyoto Protocol -- an amendment to an international treaty on climate change, assigning mandatory targets for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions to signatory nations -- due to its unique political status, but it is determined to tackle the issue head on, said Young.

By establishing a legal basis, promoting an inventory of GHG emissions and voluntary reduction measures, promoting a national emission reduction campaign and improving inter-agency cooperation, Taiwan should be able to able to shore up an effective GHG reduction strategy, he said.


Taipei, Sept. 23 (CNA) A retrospective exhibition on Hsu Tsang-houei, the first Taiwanese musician to study in France after World War II and one of the most respected composers in Taiwan, will be held in Paris, France from Sept. 28 to Oct. 25, the Council of Cultural Affairs (CCA) said Saturday.

The retrospective show, titled "Navigator of Taiwanese Folk Music: Hsu Tsang-houei, " includes a month-long exhibition and an opening-night memorial concert at the Taiwan Cultural Center in Paris to pay tribute to the late prominent composer, who passed away in 2001 at the age of 72.

Hsu, who was born in Changhua in 1929, went to Paris in 1954 and became the first Taiwanese musician to study in France. It was in Paris that he learned that unique music elements are keys to instilling new life in music.

Hsu devoted himself to folk music compilation after returning to Taiwan in 1959. In addition to rewriting Chinese and Taiwanese folk songs with Western composition methods, he also helped found the Asian Composers' League and several modern music groups.


Taipei, Sept. 22 (CNA) Two water conservation events will be held this weekend in Yilan County to raise public awareness on protecting water resources and the environment.

In Taiwan, events will be held for World Water Monitoring Day (WWMD) and World Rivers Day at Dongshan River on Sept. 23 and the National Center for Traditional Art on Sept. 24, respectively.

WWMD was started in 2002 by Robbi Savage, president and CEO of America's Clean Water Foundation. Savage, who is currently visiting Taiwan, will lead a group of local environmentalists and students in conducting a basic monitoring of the water in Dongshan river Saturday.

WWMD is an international education and outreach program that builds public awareness and involvement in protecting water resources around the world by engaging citizens in conducting such monitoring of local bodies of water.

On Sunday, Taiwan will celebrate the launch of its own national Rivers Day. Canadian environmentalist Mark Angelo, who started the Rivers Day initiative in British Columbia, Canada in 1980, will deliver a speech on the topic.

Angelo's Rivers Day initiative was so successful that it was recognized by the Canadian government as a national event in 2003. The United Nations also established a global Rivers Day campaign in 2005.


Taipei, Sept. 22 (CNA) Environmentalists from Canada and the U.S. encouraged Taiwanese environmental groups to "keep doing the right things" and to never underestimate themselves in a seminar Friday.

Mark Angelo from Canada and Robbi Savage from the U.S. were both impressed at the number of participants attending the seminar, which was held at National Taiwan University and focused on water resource-related issues.

It takes years and a lot of effort to see the results of water quality improvement and cleaning the waterways, said Angelo, who started a Rivers Day initiative in British Columbia, Canada in 1980 to clean up the waterways.

"But never underestimate yourselves even when you are local groups," he said, adding that by establishing networks and alliances, local groups can have a huge impact.

Angelo's initiative was a perfect example. It was recognized by the Canadian government as a national event in 2003. And the United Nations followed suit with the launch of a global Rivers Day campaign in 2005.

Taiwan's environmental groups should also work with local and central governments, said Robbi Savage, who in 2003 started the World Water Monitoring Day (WWMD) initiative. Since its inception, more than 80,000 people in 50 countries have participated in the program.

For environmental protection programs to be successful, legislation and regulation should be in place. And these programs and initiatives need financial and technical backing from the government as well, she explained.

Angelo said he understood how drastically different environmental pressure in Canada can be from a densely populated nation like Taiwan.

"But our attitudes and hopes to protect the environment are the same," he said.


Taipei, Sept. 21 (CNA) The relative success of Taiwanese women's participation in politics will face a new challenge in the future to go from policy counselling to policy making, participants in a forum said Thursday.

Taiwan women's political participation rate ranks among the highest in the world, but women should play an even more important role in the government, National Taiwan University Professor Huang Chang-lin said in the forum organized by the Department of Women's Development of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP.)

At present, women's participation in politics is generally restricted to elections, the legislature, and policy counseling, said DPP Legislator Wang Shu-hui. However, women's participation in politics should be "broader and further" than that, she added.

"Democracy is more than policy elaboration, policy making is equally important. There should be more women participation in major public policies because women tend to look at the world in a different perspective to men, " said DPP Secretary-General Lin Chia-lung.

"We have to reconsider the partnership between women's groups and the government. And I believe we'll have a better government with more women participating, " he said.

To achieve this aim, government attitude will be a key factor, said Huang, citing the example of the Commission on Women's Rights Promotion (CWRP) under the Executive Yuan as saying that CWRP has been involved more in policy making since

The issue of gender equality is one of the most important processes in democratization. And as successful as Taiwan women already are, there are still more challenges ahead, she said.

The forum is the last in a series of events that commemorates the tenth anniversary of the establishment of the DPP's Department of Women's Development.


Taipei, Sept. 21 (CNA) Aiming to generate students' interest in structural engineering and earthquake mitigation, an international competition titled APEC IDEERS (Introducing and Demonstrating Earthquake Engineering Research in Schools) 2006 will be held in Taipei with participants from nine Asia-Pacific countries.

The annual competition, approved by the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum earlier this year as an educational event, will take place Sept. 23-24 at the National Center for Research on Earthquake Engineering (NCREE.)

The 95 participating student teams will make model houses out of wood, paper, raw pasta, string and glue, and see how well their designs stand up to artificial tremor motion. Judges will select the top three teams from the graduate, university and high school groups.

The IDEERS competition was initiated at the University of Bristol and has been held by NCREE and the British Trade and Cultural Office in Taipei every year since 2001.


Taipei, Sept. 21 (CNA) A 226-km triathlon will be held for the first time in Taiwan in a three-day international competition, presenting what the organizers claimed in a press conference Thursday will be the "ultimate challenge" for competitors from eight countries.

The 161 participants will swim 3.8 km, cycle 180 km and run 42.195 km in the "iron distance" competition Sept. 29 in the southern county of Pingtung, said Taiwan Triathlon Association (TTA) Secretary-General Cheng Wen-chang.

A 51.5-km triathlon, which is the Olympic distance and includes a 1.5-km swim, a 40-km cycle and a 10-km run, will be held Sept. 30 with 478 racers. The third competition -- a children's triathlon -- will be held Oct. 1.

The iron distance could last as long as 17 hours and poses a big challenge to the competitors, said TTA President Pan Meng-an.

However, challenge is what brought Shane Dennison to the competition. Dennison, who married a Taiwanese girl and currently lives in Taiwan, said he loves the mental challenge of an iron distance more than the physical challenge.

"And the competition is being held in Taiwan. That saves me a lot of money because it costs at least NT$100,000 to compete in similar competitions overseas, " he said.

"Pingtung County has successfully hosted three medium distance (113-km) triathlons in the past three years and is confident of presenting an exciting and successful event this year, " said Pingtung County Magistrate Tsao Chi-hung.


Taipei, Sept. 20 (CNA) A coalition of 10 Taiwanese non-government organizations (NGOs) called Wednesday for peace in Taiwan, East Asia and the world on the eve of United Nations International Day of Peace and the seventh anniversary of the 921 earthquake.

"And we also call for everyone in Taiwan to love instead of hate, and to respect the rule of law instead of venting anger with violence and provocation, " said coalition spokesman Tang Kuang-hua, referring to the latest political developments that have seen a small amount of violence in a tiny section of the anti-President Chen Shui-bian protests over the past two days.

In four appeals the coalition submitted, it called for all political parties and the media to stop the ethnic division and work together for harmony of race, class and gender to facilitate Taiwan's inner peace.

It also urged Taiwan and China to stop their arms race and respect each other's political systems. The coalition opposed North Korea's nuclear program and advocated a peaceful solution of the Korean peninsula issue.

For world peace, the coalition envisioned the cooperation of grassroots movements from different countries to help establish a war-prevention system.

The coalition does not rule out launching a document cosigned by all Taiwanese NGOs in the coming days and making a stronger statement regarding peace facilitation, said Ho Tsung-hsun, secretary-general of the Taiwan Environmental Protection Union (TEPU).

"Diversity is the biggest asset of Taiwan. We encourage a culture of respecting differences and diversity. Reconcile conflicts. Eliminate hatred, " Tang said.

Notable NGOs that form the coalition include TEPU, the National Union of Taiwan Women Association, the Constitutional Reform Alliance, the National Association for the Promotion of Community Colleges, PeaceIsland and the Garden of Hope Foundation.


Taipei, Sept. 20 (CNA) A cross-Taiwan Strait book fair opened in Taiwan Wednesday for the first time in its two-year history, hoping to boost publishing exchanges between Taiwan and China with a five-day exhibition and eventually make Chinese publishing the world's mainstream in the future.

Approximately a million books from Taiwanese and Chinese publishers are on display in the Cross-Strait Book Fair (CSBF) that will run through Sept. 24, the organizers said at the opening ceremony.

The inaugural CSBF was held in the Chinese city of Xiamen last year and was the first sales opportunity in China for Taiwanese publishers.

As bilateral publishing exchanges and sales have increased, more Chinese publishers have set their eyes on the Taiwan market, with 196 publishers from China participating in the fair, said Huang Guorong, deputy secretary-general of the Publishers Association of China.

According to a report released by the Xiamen International Book Center, Chinese purchases of Taiwanese books exceeded NT$24 million in 2005 and is expected to break the NT$40 million mark this year, Huang said.

Taiwan's purchases of Chinese books in 2005 totaled NT$68 million, the report went on.

The most popular categories of Chinese books in Taiwan include literature, art, history and ancient materials, while Chinese are most interested in Taiwanese history, literature and philosophy, said CSBF organizing committee chairman Wang Cheng-hui.

Rarely seen replica ancient books from China, such as the Yongle Encyclopedia and the Imperial Collection of the Four -- the biggest collection of books in Chinese history, are also displayed in a theme section at the fair.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006


Taipei, Sept. 19 (CNA) An international information and communication technology (ICT) forum was held Tuesday to explore business opportunities for Taiwanese and Indian companies, especially in the telecommunications sector.

"Taiwan and India complement each other well. this is why the partnership makes sense, " said Institute for Information Industry (III) President Ke Jyh-sheng, referring to Taiwan's competitiveness in IT hardware and India's IT strong software capability.

Vijay Gokhale, Director-General of India-Taipei Association, shared a similar observation, saying that most Taiwanese companies need to "scale up" and transform to embrace the knowledge-based economy because traditional industries are "being pushed out of the country."

Gokhale urged Taiwanese companies to develop long-term relationships with Indian companies since the cooperation would serve the interests of both sides.

He was also optimistic about bilateral relations, as direct flights between Taipei and Mumbai will soon begin, while those between Taipei and New Delhi will be increased.

The National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM) , India's catalyst for growth of services and software, organized a delegation of more than a dozen Indian companies that attended the one-day forum, which was hosted by the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) and organized by the III, the Industrial Technology Research Institute and NASSCOM.


Taipei, Sept. 19 (CNA) ESPN STAR Sports, Asia's biggest sports broadcast company, will organize a charity basketball game in Taiwan Sept. 23 to celebrate its 10th anniversary, the company announced Tuesday.

A team of sports commentators will meet a team of entertainers in the game, which will be held at the Taipei Physical Education College Gymnasium, with all proceeds going to the Child Welfare League Foundation.

The company began as two channels and now has 13 channels reaching over 200 million viewers in 25 countries, said ESPN STAR Sports President Jamie Davis.


Taipei, Sept. 18 (CNA) The pro-independence Taiwan Society demanded Monday that cable television network CTiTV provide fairer and more objective news report and set a "10-day deadline" for improvement.

"If CTiTV fails to present fair and objective news reporting within an observation period of 10 days, the Taiwan Society will refuse any invitation to be interviewed thereafter, " said Taiwan Society Secretary-General Chet Yang one day after CtiTV claimed that one of its reporters was attacked at a rally organized by the Taiwan Society.

Three television networks, including CTiTV, claimed their reporters were attacked by crowds in a pro-president Chen Shui-bian rally last Saturday.

A review conducted from Sept. 14- 16, which was released by media watch group Broadcasting Development Fund (BDF) , shows that CTiTV news coverage was greatly slanted in favor of the anti-president protest, said BDF CEO Connie Lin.

In a written statement, Yang apologized to the network for violent acts by rally participants but also condemned "violence of the media, " saying that the media should not make up news, quote anonymous sources and apply double standards in news reporting.


Taipei, Sept. 18 (CNA) A two-day international conference will be held Sept. 19-20 to discuss the rapid increase and impact of cross-border marriages in Asia and Europe.

The Conference on Intermediated Cross-Border Marriages in Asia and Europe, which is being organized by the National Science Council (NSC) , the Institute of Sociology of Academia Sinica and the Netherlands-based International Institute of Asian Studies has invited 13 foreign academics for discussions with their local counterparts.

"In Taiwan, cross-border marriages accounted for 27.4 percent of the total marriages in 2002, with one out of every eight children in Taiwan born into a cross-border family, " said NSC Deputy Minister Yang Hung-duen.

The same phenomenon can be seen in East Asian countries like South Korea and Japan, he said.

"The phenomena of 'brides from Asia' in Japan, 'mixed marriages' in South Korea, and 'foreign and Chinese brides' in Taiwan, all attract huge media attention, cause public panic and challenge these societies whose population policies are based on mono-ethnic principles, " he claimed.

In Europe, marriage migration also has been steadily growing, resulting from globalization and the expansion of the European Union, he said. The issues of the political, social and cultural citizenship of migrants and their children are constantly in public debate, he added.


Taipei, Sept. 18 (CNA) The second Taiwan European Film Festival will be held from Sept. 21 to Oct. 8 and will be expanded to three cities, with 10 European films being screened, organizers announced Monday in Taipei.

The event will be the only film festival in Taiwan to show exclusively European films, said festival organizer Frederic Laplanche of the European Economic and Trade Office in Taipei, who added that it will "let Taiwanese people feel the united diversity in the European Union and the European life style."

Three of the films -- Soccer Day from Spain, Liberated Zone from Germany and In Orange from the Netherlands -- are "soccer films" that reflect the soccer fever throughout Europe.

"Soccer to Europe is like air to humans. We breathe and sleep with it, " Laplanche claimed.

The films will be screened in Taichung Universal Cinema City from Sept. 24- 28, in the Taipei Eslite Hsinyi from Sept. 28-Oct. 1, and in the Hsinchu Museum of Images from Oct. 4-8. Showings in Taichung and Hsinchu will be free of charge.

"I have found that Europeans and Taiwanese share the same passion for movies. And Europeans really like Taiwanese movies, especially those by directors Edward Yang, Ho Hsiao-hsien and Tsai Ming-liang, " according to Laplanche.

Since Taiwanese are more familiar with French films, organizers this year brought in films from countries such as Poland, Hungary, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, Sweden and Ireland so the audience can get a different feel, he added.


Taipei, Sept. 15 (CNA) A collection of Taiwanese cultural and historical relics from World War II is being displayed in Taipei to remind Taiwanese of the brutality of war and to commemorate the 61st anniversary of the end of WWII.

The exhibition, titled "Memory under Fire, " opened in Taipei Sept. 1 and will run until Feb. 28, 2007 at the exhibition hall of Taiwan Storyland, a repository of Taiwanese historical memorabilia and a recreated 1965 small town.

The exhibition has hundreds of items of wartime memorabilia such as a machine gun, a doorplate of volunteer soldiers, an air raid scarf, soldiers' salary envelopes and many wartime documents.

"The exhibition hopes to help Taiwanese, especially young people, to know more about the war. The more you understand it, the more you cherish life and your homeland, " said Franky Wu, the curator and president of Taiwan Storyland.

Most of the displayed items have been selected from Wu's large personal collection -- he has been collecting historical items for more than 20 years.

"Displaying these items could be a sensitive issue for traditionalists since it makes this place like a Japanese colony again. But all I want to do is to let these items speak for themselves, " he added.

"We look to the past so we know how to embrace the future, " said Yang Huang May-sing, vice minister of the Overseas Chinese Affairs Commission.

Various organizations, including the Taiwanese Association of Ex-Japanese Soldiers and Families and the Taiwanese Association of Enlisting in Military and Serving as Caretakers from Districts Outside Japan, also donated items for the exhibition.

Friday, September 15, 2006


Taipei, Sept. 14 (CNA) Taiwan media's coverage of two construction projects in Taiwan and China were "astonishingly off-balance and leaned toward China, " a local media watch group said in a report Thursday.

Forty-seven percent of the media coverage of the Hsuehshan tunnel, the longest tunnel in Taiwan that connects the city of Taipei to the northesatern county of Yilan, was negative, while only 10 percent of the reports on China's Qinghai-Tibet Railway were negative, the report found.

Qinghai-Tibet Railway connects China's Qinghai Province to Tibet Autonomous Region and is the highest rail track in the world. It was constructed according to schedule and encountered few problems, while the Hsuehshan tunnel ran over-schedule and encountered numerous massive technical problems during construction.

Ignoring the social, economic, ecological and cultural impact of the railway showed the decontextualization in the media coverage, said Chin Heng-wei, chief editor of Contemporary magazine.

The railway also presented China's military projection to Tibet, which has been seeking for independence over the years, and reflects China's possible thinking on Taiwan, warned Chung Nien-huang of the media watch group Taiwan Herald Society.

The report, which was released by Broadcasting Development Fund, monitored the news coverage of six electronic media and seven print media before and after the inauguration of both constructions.


Taipei, Sep. 14 (CNA) A rally scheduled to take place Saturday on Taipei's Ketagelan Boulevard hopes to present "the positive force of Taiwan" and have "the silent majority voice" heard, organizers said at an international press conference Thursday.

The rally, organized by the pro-independence Taiwan Society has been officially named "Formosa Sunrise" and will take place from 3-6 pm Sept. 16, one day after the conclusion of the ongoing anti-President Chen Shui-bian protest.

It isnot a campaign to support Chen or one to fight former Democratic Progressive Party Chairman Shih Ming-teh, who organized the anti-Chen campaign, the Taiwan Society said in a press release.

Organizers said the rally, which organizers hope will attract 100,000 participants, supports the democratic system and rule of law, rather than any single individual.

They also claimed the "anti-corruption" argument presented by the anti-Chen protesters is an "excuse" and pointed out that everyone is innocent until proven guilty.

Taiwan's young democracy needs the support of everyone, said Taiwan Society President Wu Shu-ming, adding that Taiwan also needs international support to maintain its democracy, freedom and rule of law.

"Darkness is not the color of Taiwan. We believe in love, hope, peace and democracy. Violence and hatred lead Taiwan to nowhere, " said Che Pei-chun, Taiwan Society spokeswoman and a professor at National Chengchi University.

"Our rally will not be 'anti' anything but we want to say what it is for. We are for democracy and rule of law, " said Lo Chih-cheng, a professor at Soochow University.

The president is not obliged to step down just because there are people protesting, Lo pointed out.


Taipei, Sept. 14 (CNA) The "Million Voices Against Corruption" campaign aimed at forcing President Chen Shui-bian to step down has only created division instead of finding a solution, academics said Thursday.

The protest led by former ruling Democratic Progressive Party Chairman Shih Ming-teh has not presented any discussion of a solution, said Lo Chih-cheng, a Soochow University professor.

"Why will Taiwan be a better country after President Chen steps down? The protest does not explain that, " Lo said.

The protest has also failed to conquer three great divides: the ideological divide, the class divide, and the ethnic divide, Lo went on.

It is hard to look at the event as a non-partisan campaign and an urban middle-class demonstration, he added.

"The protest reminds me of China's Cultural Revolution in the 1960s, " said Bob Kuo, a professor at National Sun Yat-sen University.

"Foreigners who watch television news in Taiwan might get the idea that Chen accomplished nothing during the past six years, " said Che Pei-chun, a professor at National Chengchi University.

"But I'm proud of Taiwan. I'm proud of the Hsuehshan tunnel and everything Taiwan has accomplished over the years, " she said, adding that now is the time to look at the brighter side of Taiwan and keep the country going.

"I would like to say to the protesters: "Come on, get a life, " Che added.


Taipei, Sept. 14 (CNA) A report found that cable television news coverage of an ongoing anti-Chen sit-in campaign has been so excessive that as much as three quarters of all 60-minute newscasts have been focusing on the topic, a media watchdog said Thursday.

Three of six television news networks monitored by the watchdog featured reportage on the campaign that took up more than half of every hour of news broadcasts from Aug. 22- 24, with TVBS-N topping the list at 75 percent, ETTV second at 62 percent, and SET third at 51 percent, said Connie Lin, CEO of the Broadcasting Development Fund.

On Aug. 23, TVBS-N devoted 85 percent of its new reporting to the campaign, the review found.

"It makes you wonder if this [campaign] has been the only thing that has happened in Taiwan," she said.

The news coverage has been unbalanced as well since the campaign began on Sept. 9, said Hsu Yung-ming, a research fellow at Academia Sinica.

Hsu pointed out that only two cable television networks reported on President Chen Shui-bian's teleconference with Taiwan allies' ambassadors to the UN, U.S. scholars and the international press yesterday, when Taiwan's bid for the UN membership was blocked for the 14th straight year.

"As far as news reporting goes, it is hard for me to see where the Principle of Proportionality is," Hsu said.


Taipei, Sept. 13 (CNA) A pair of French specialists completed a six-day trip to Penghu, an island group off southwestern Taiwan, Wednesday to help with the first project of underwater cultural assets preservation in Taiwan, according to a government agency.

Jean-Luc Massy, director of the Department for Underwater and Undersea Archeological Research (DRASSM) which is under the supervision of the French Ministry of Culture, led a group of Taiwanese researchers in the expedition off the coast of Makung, Penghu, searching for a shipwreck.

Ceramics and ancient Chinese porcelain were found during dredging of Makung harbor last year. The dredging was immediately suspended after the findings, and gossip about shipwrecks and a submerged city soon spread among the locals, said Chang Lung, Director of the National Center for Research and Preservation of Cultural Property.

The research team found porcelain, ceramics and wood during two dives into the 10-meter-deep water, Massy said, adding that the articles could come from the 15th to 18th Century but there was no evidence of a shipwreck.

There is estimated to be more than 300 shipwrecks in the Taiwan Strait, Chang said.

With the help of underwater archeology, the study of Taiwanese maritime history will help give a better understanding of its ancient history and position in Southeast Asia, Massy added.


Taipei, Sep. 13 (CNA) Fifteen groups and individuals will be honored with the 2006 National HRD (Human Resources Development) InnoPrize on Sep. 22, organizers announced Wednesday at a press conference.

The selection committee, supervised by the Council of Labor Affairs, selected 15 out of 79 applicants for the annual award, which aims to recognize innovative human resources development in Taiwan.

The international forum "Summit on Globalization of Human Resources 2006" will be held in conjunction with the award ceremony from Sep. 22-23, organizers said.

Delegations from seven countries and 11 human resources scholars, including University of Pennsylvania professor Peter Capelli, will participate in the two-day summit.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006


Taipei, Sep. 12 (CNA) The British Trade and Cultural Office (BTCO) will organize a Taiwan delegation to participate the U.K. Nano Forum in October, the British representative office in Taiwan announced Tuesday.

The delegation will be in Britain from Oct. 23- 27 and will visit London, Newcastle and Oxford, the BTCO said in a press release.

The one-day U.K. Nano Forum, which will be held Oct. 24 in London, is a conference and exhibition that provides a networking forum for leading edge nanotech businesses, R&D and government representatives, as well as venture capitalists, potential technology buyers and those seeking to develop joint ventures.

High-level delegates from invited countries, including the U.S., Germany, Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, Switzerland, Finland and Sweden, will be able to discuss business needs and find partners at the forum, according to the statement.


Taipei, Sept. 12 (CNA) A massive assembly has been planned by various groups for Sept. 16 to counter the "Million Voices Against Corruption" campaign, calling for protection of Taiwanese values and opposition to polarization and disorder, the organizers announced Tuesday.

Led by the pro-independence Taiwan Society, more than a hundred civic groups are organizing the rally, titled "Facing the Sun: Love, Hope, and Taiwan Light, " that will take place on Ketagelan Boulevard Saturday, one day after the expected conclusion of the anti-President Chen Shui-bian protest led by Shih Ming-teh, a veteran politician who once served as chairman of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party, at the same location.

"We want to express the ideals that the general public needs stabilization instead of polarization; law and order instead of revolution; economic prosperity instead of disorder, " said Chet Yang, secretary-general of the Taiwan Society.

The Taiwan Society is an umbrella group that consists of Taiwan Society North, Taiwan Society South, Taiwan Society East, Taiwan Herald Society, and several groups in Japan and North America.

The anti-Chen protest, which began Sept. 9, has got out of hand and has reached the point of "possible guerrilla war in the city, " Yang claimed.

"The silence and pain of most people have gone unnoticed during this period. The ultimate values of Taiwan -- democracy, freedom, happiness and stabilization -- are on the verge of destruction, " he said, adding that he is confident that 100,000 participants will take part.


Taipei, Sep. 11 (CNA) A successful company is able to develop a brand without a logo, but a lot more effort is needed to accomplishing this, Danish brand strategist Martin Lindstrom said Monday in a symposium held in Taipei.

"Most people" can tell a Louis Vuitton bag or a Coca Cola bottle without seeing the logos, " Lindstrom claimed in the symposium titled "Using the Five Senses to Build Extraordinary Brands, " adding that this is because a product is made in the factory, but "a brand is made in people's minds."

The first step to build a strong brand is to "tell a story, but never lie, " he said, adding that a strong vision, as well as patience, is needed to build a strong brand.


Taipei, Sep. 11 (CNA) Smell is the most underrated factor in developing brand, and using the five senses in brand building will be a future trend, Danish brand strategist Martin Lindstrom said in a symposium Monday in Taipei.

"The sense of smell emotionally affects humans up to 75 percent more than any other sense, " claimed Lindstrom in front of about 300 brand managers who attended the symposium, titled "Using the Five Senses to Build Extraordinary Brand."

In 2006, only 1.7 percent of consumers could recall at least one television advertisement from the previous day, compared to 34 percent in 1965, Lindstrom said.

"This shows that the more information we receive, the harder it is to develop brand, " he said.

Today, 83 percent of all information people receive is visual, but eight out of ten new brand products flop. Lindstrom said this also implies that visual factors do not help building brands.

"Which tells us that we have to find another way to build brands, " he said, adding that five senses -- smell, touch, sight, sound, and taste -- are probably "the new way."

As an example, he noted that Singapore Airlines has patented the smell of its hot towels and developed a successful brand, while on the contrary, 25 percent of interviewees in a survey said they did not like McDonalds outlets because of their greasy smell.

Sunday, September 10, 2006


Taipei, Sept. 9 (CNA) A two-day international symposium was held in Taipei to discuss Taiwan studies in Japan and Japan studies in Taiwan.

The annual symposium was organized by East Asia Relations Commission, Taiwan's de facto embassy in Japan, from Sep. 9- 10 and gathered a group of Japanese and Taiwanese scholars.

A total of eight theses will be presented in two days and wide-ranging topics such as security issues of Japan and Taiwan, Taiwan's education and textile industry during the Japanese colonial era, the U.S. government's restraint on Taiwan during the Cold War era, and Taiwanese cinema will be discussed.

Interestingly, mutual relations between Taiwan and Japan have been growing since 1945, the end of the Japanese colonial era, as Taiwanese did not hold any resentment against Japan, said East Asia Relations Commission President Lo Fu-chen.

"And the resistance against Japan in the colonial era became the threshold of what we call the 'Taiwanese identity' today, " he said.

"Taiwan and Japan are similar in some way, " Minister of Education Tu Cheng-sheng said. Tu cited Prime Minister frontrunner Shinzo Abe's new book "Toward a beautiful country" as saying that both countries are facing similar issues such as becoming a normal country and educational reform.

Ikeda Tadashi, Chief Representative of Interchange Association Japan's Taipei Office -- Japan's de facto embassy in Taiwan, also welcomed more interchange between two countries.

"Taiwan people's friendliness toward Japan has been unparalleled, especially in comparison with China and South Korea, " he said.


Taipei, Sept. 9 (CNA) Taiwan's nationalization has a long way to go and needs a continued effort amid the rise of China, the suppression from China, and lukewarm support from the U.S. and the international community, a professor said in an international conference Saturday.

Chen Wen-hsien, a professor at National Cheng Chi University, offered his analysis in a thesis titled "Predicament and the U.S. factor of Taiwan's nationalization: Observation after DPP came into power."

Taiwan's nationalization movement has been consistently facing domestic dispute, suppression from China, and obstruction from the U.S., Chen said.

U.S. position and policy has been especially critical in the process, as Chen detailed U.S. reaction after three major announcements from President Chen Shui-bian -- "five noes" in 2000, "one country on each side of the strait" in 2002, and "action for referendum and Taiwanese constitution" in 2003.

Taiwan faced a unique situation which its democratization came before the nationalization, Chen said. And "the Taiwanese identity was immediately challenged as domestic consensus on national identity has not been reached yet.

"A harsh truth for the Taiwanese is that, after decades of effort, a democratic Taiwan has not won the support from the U.S. and international community of its nationalization, " Chen noted.

The U.S. also showed severe concern over Taiwan's nationalization in the possible military conflict with China and potential damage of U.S. national interest, Chen said.


Taipei, Sep. 8 (CNA) A film festival in which musicians have been invited to perform live improvisation to accompany a series of silent films was launched at the National Palace Museum (NPM) Friday.

The "Old is News: Sound of Silence" festival is showing 10 silent films that represent a spectrum of movie genres including documentary, romance, horror, science fiction and comedy. The films will be shown at the museum from Sept. 8- 17.

Golden Horse Award-winning musician Chen Yang performed live to accompany Charlie Chaplin's classic film "City Lights" Friday at the premiere.

"In this festival, we try to tell everyone why 'old is new' and how today's classic could be yesterday's avant-garde, " said NPM Director Lin Mun-lee.

"We hope to provide an original atmosphere for silent films and to create an enjoyable and memorable performance, " she said.

The other films to be shown include The General, The Cabinet of Doctor Caligari, Metropolis, Nosferatu, Triumph of the Will, The Goddess, The Phantom of the Opera, The Jazz Singer, and Where the Movies Begin.

Invited musicians include Chen Yang, Chu T'ou P'I. However, some of the films will be accompanied by DJs rather than by actual musicians.

The festival is the second part of the NPM's "World Perspective: Visual Series, " following a French film festival that was held in March. The third part of the series, a New Wave film festival, is expected to be held in February 2007.

Friday, September 08, 2006


Taipei, Sep. 7 (CNA) Cerrus International, Britain's biggest supplier of IT software to the social and healthcare sectors, aims to enter Taiwan market by the end of this year, Cerrus chief executive Stewart Maxwell said in Taipei Thursday.

Many leading healthcare associations in Europe are clients of Cerrus. In the United Kingdom alone, 20,000 people use the system, titled Saturn, every day across 2,000 sites, said Maxwell.

The social and healthcare sector is the fastest-growing industry in the world due to a global increase in the aging population and advances in medical science. With this increase brings economic, cultural and operational change in which IT plays an essential part in helping to manage this process, Maxwell said.

"The introduction of the Saturn software to Taiwan will lead to innovations in the local industry. One of our primary objectives for 2006 is to develop our unique application in readiness for a major international release -- the first of its kind anywhere in the world, " he said.

In Taiwan, there has been tremendous interest in the system. Cerrus is in discussions with local private and government agencies to produce a version of Saturn for the Taiwan social and healthcare market. It will launch the system for Taiwan at the Mediphar Exhibition in November.


Taipei, Sep. 7 (CNA) U.S. basketball star Kobe Bryant, who plays
for the Los Angeles Lakers, delivered his "message and philosophy"
Thursday to young people and fans on his first trip to Taiwan, a
whirlwind 24-hour visit.
"It's important to enjoy the game. Just by doing it and actually
playing the game you can be good at it, " the 27-year-old star guard
said in a press conference before a meet-the-fans event slated for
that evening.
Bryant's 81-point performance -- the NBA's second-highest single game scoring record -- last season is still the talk of Taiwanese fans and media. Bryant, one of the most popular basketball players in Taiwan, said the achievement is the reward of perseverance, hard work, training and luck.

Bryant and Nike Taiwan donated a basketball court to indigenous children in Wufeng township, Hsinchu County, where landslides had wrecked most of the basketball courts.

Bryant later met 4,000 fans at the National Taiwan University Gymnasium, where he conducted a short basketball clinic and gave a demonstration.

Taiwan is the third stop for Bryant on his Sep. 4- 9 Asia Tour, which also includes Tokyo, Hong Kong, Seoul and Beijing.


Taipei, Sep. 7 (CNA) A Canadian English teacher and painter whose work is being displayed at the Canadian Trade Office in Taipei said Thursday that his "most unforgettable experiences" are what inspire his painting.

Cole Swanson said that during a trip to Jaipur, India a few years ago, a massive flock of pigeons in front of Albert Hall caught his attention.

"The birds that littered the front steps were so numerous that I could barely walk a straight line through them. When they rose into the sky, I became lost. The wings of the birds were so many that my whole world dissolved right in front of my eyes, " said Swanson, who lives in Taipei and makes his living teaching English.

"I was left with the pure sensation of their multitude. They were no longer birds; they were an enormous living thing, " he said, adding that this is why he has been focusing on pigeons as the main theme of his work ever since.

Swanson, 23, has been living in Taiwan for eight months and plans on staying for another six months. Being able to earn money teaching English while painting in his spare time is what brought him to Taiwan after spending a year in India studying Indian folk design and miniature painting.

"An artist is someone who tries to express a certain kind of identity. I'm a little bit different. For me, this is an exhibition that does not necessarily believe in anything, " he said cryptically.


Taipei, Sep. 6 (CNA) In the era of knowledge-based economy, everyone should read and more importantly think to catch up with the changing times, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) Chairman Morris Chang said in a forum Wednesday.

"Knowledge is the basic requirement in a knowledge economy. Thinking is what creates ideas and leads to innovation and added-value, " Chang said hours after his arrival from San Francisco early Wednesday.

"Simply put, we can say that knowledge is not the key word in a knowledge economy; turning knowledge into interests -- or money -- is, " he explained, quoting Chinese philosopher and educator Confucius as saying: "To study and not think is a waste."

Delivering his speech to more than 500 people on the topic of corporate learning, Chang elaborated on three biggest changes during the last 20 years.

"Our society has been going through enormous changes with the impact of knowledge economy and globalization. It has created a winners' circle and, at the same time, a high unemployment rate of college graduates, " he said.

"Subjectification" of the emerging importance of business models is the second impact, Chang said.

"From Dell to Starbucks, from to eBay and Google, successful companies are now selling business models, not just their products, " he noted.

Lastly, the rise of China and India has sent shockwaves round the world, he said.

"In addition to the advocacy of lifetime reading and learning, we need to understand the importance of thinking as well. It is what keeps us in the winners' circle," Chang said.

TSMC, founded in 1987, is the world's largest dedicated semiconductor foundry. Its revenues represent some 50% of the global foundry market.


Taipei, Sep. 6 (CNA) The Harvard Business Review (HBR) , one of the most respected management magazines, officially launched a Chinese edition in Taiwan Wednesday, according to an announcement by Harvard Business School Publishing CEO David Wan.

In collaboration with Commonwealth Publishing, HBR Chinese edition debuted with its September 2006 issue, Wan said.

Approximately 80 percent of its content will be translated from the English edition, while 20 percent will be Taiwan-related.

HBR is known as an agenda-setting pioneer among its peers, said Wan. Management concepts such as blue ocean strategy, core competence, re-engineering, globalization and marketing myopia were first published in HBR.

Research-based HBR is a general management magazine published since 1922 by Harvard Business School Publishing, owned by the Harvard Business School. Its worldwide English-language circulation is 240,000, while 11 regional editions boast a circulation of 150,000.


Taipei, Sep. 5 (CNA) The Japanese prefecture of Yamaguchi organized a promotional seminar Tuesday in Taipei, hoping to attract more Taiwanese visitors.

An estimated 10,000 Taiwanese tourists visit Yamaguchi Prefecture every year, said Aimoto Takayuki, Tourism Division chief of staff of the Yamaguchi prefecture government. With the Japanese government declaring visa exemption for Taiwanese tourists in September 2005, the number is expected to increase.

The prefecture, which has been described as the gateway of Honshu and Kyushu, has various places and events for Taiwanese tourists to enjoy, he said, such as cherry blossoms and the Akiyoshido cave -- the largest limetone plateau in Japan.

The port city of Shimonoseki also has a special meaning for Taiwan, Takayuki said. The city was where the Treaty of Shimonoseki between the Qing Dynasty and Japan was signed in 1895 to hand over Taiwan to Japan.

Yamaguchi became the latest of many Japanese prefectures to promote tourism in Taiwan, an official of the Japanese National Tourism Organization said.


Taipei, Sep. 5 (CNA) Taiwanese corporations should develop "Taiwanese factors in the branding process" by looking back at Taiwan's culture, history and philosophy, the vice president of South Korea's Hyundai KIA Motor Corp. said Tuesday.

The revision of its brand strategy has helped Hyundai enormously, which shows the importance of branding, Hyundai-KIA Vice President Kim Young-ill said in an international forum in Taipei.

Kim encouraged Taiwanese corporation to develop "Taiwanese factors, " citing Hyundai's "Korean factors" as an example, on their way to "global branding."

Hyundai-KIA re-organized its brand strategy in 1999, Kim said in the Branding Taiwan Forum, held to promote branding awareness in Taiwan.

By defining its brand positioning, brand identity, design identity and product identity, the Korean company was able to improve its past designs, which were inconsistent and failed to develop any strategy, he said.

The effort has shown promising results, as Hyundai-KIA registered a compound annual growth rate of 11% during 2002-2006 and now sells over 4 million cars a year.

Kim said the company looked back to its past and looked to the future. "First we looked at how we have been and decided what we want to be. The final step is goal-setting, " he said.


Taipei, Sep. 5 (CNA) Taiwan should transform itself from the so-called "silicon island" of the 1990s to a "brand value-added island" by 2015 for sustainable economic growth, Acer Group founder Stan Shih said in an international forum Tuesday.

The cultivation of brand economy, a synonym of knowledge economy, will make a value-added Taiwan and help create the second wave of "Taiwan miracle, " Shih said in the opening lecture of the Branding Taiwan forum, a part of the 2006 Branding Taiwan campaign.

Based on the "smiling curve" concept he submitted in 1992, Shih said Taiwan will have to be a global value-added service center in the future, with focus on the 3Bs -- global bridge, global brand and global brain.

"The knowledge economy is the brand economy, " he said, adding that brand is the most cost-effective property right.

"And education and vertical integration will be the keys in branding, " he went on.

"Competitiveness equals value divided by cost. We have been trying to 'cost-down' in the past and were pretty successful. But now is the time to work on increasing values, " said Shih, who in 1976 founded Acer Group, one of the most successful Taiwanese global brands.

Branding Taiwan can start with four major categories: digital technology products; fine food/flower/fruits; leisure-related products and culture-related products such as art, charity and medical care, Shih said.

Taiwanese government and corporations have devoted a lot of effort to innovation, but efforts in branding have been lacking, Shih said.

Regarding the potential of branding, Shih said Taiwanese traditional industries are even more promising than the high-tech sector in terms of developing global brands.

Sunday, September 03, 2006


Taipei, Sept. 2 (CNA) The "Republic of Creativity" project plays a special role for more than 800 booths at the 2006 Taipei International Invention Show and Technomart (TIIST) , as it reminds inventors that promotion and marketing are also key factors of successful innovation.

The project, which was established in 2004 and supervised by non-profit China Productivity Center (CPC), aims to give inventors and innovators skills in media outreach and counseling on marketing strategies.

"To put it simply, you provide the idea, we provide the marketing and promotional help," a CPC staffed surnamed Liu said.

The non-profit organization selected potential innovation projects and promote them through television channels, magazines and the Internet -- establishing Web sites, since most inventors have trouble with marketing and advertising.

Liu quoted Acer group founder Stan Shih as saying that there is more involved in innovation than just creativity, he said, "it is the combination of creativity, execution and market value."

In 2005, sixteen examples were selected and later featured in ERA television news and Business NEXT magazine.

But the project is more than marketing and promoting inventions. Since being founded in 2004, it has been trying to promote "innovation" itself, as innovation will become one of the most important factors determining international competitiveness in the new century.

"Just like the name suggests, we hope to make Taiwan the 'Republic of Creativity' in the distant future, " Liu said.


Taipei, Sep. 1 (CNA) Taiwan is not content with being ranked seventh in the world for e-Competitiveness and will strive to challenge the top five placeholders with its new initiative "Ubiquitous Networks Society" (UNS) , an official said at a forum Friday.

Taiwan will progress from the 2002 "e-Taiwan" initiative to "M-Taiwan, " (mobile Taiwan) which was launched last year, and eventually accomplish the UNS project, said Executive Yuan Minister of State Lin Feng-chin at the Asia-Pacific e-Competitiveness Forum.

The Ubiquitous Network Society will try to achieve four goals -- establish a high-speed Internet network, establish basic laws to regulate an Internet society, develop killer applications to promote an IT-enabled service industry and challenge the top five countries in e-readiness, Lin elaborated.

Forum participants spoke highly of Taiwan's e-readiness but agreed there is still room for improvement.

Taiwan was ranked 7th among 115 countries in the 2006 Network Readiness Index (NRI) conducted by the World Economic Forum, said Irene Mia, a WEF senior economist. Taiwan placed only behind Singapore -- which ranked second in the world -- among Asia-Pacific nations.

One sign of Taiwan's great success is that the WEF's annual report featured Taiwan as a case study for the second consecutive year, Mia said, noting the key role played by Taiwan's government in pursuing and funding the strategic vision of long-term information and communication technology (ICT) as a public-private partnership.

Taiwan did not fare as well in another ranking system, finishing 23rd in the Economist Intelligence Unit's (EIU) latest e-readiness listing, said Denis McCauly, Director of EIU's Global Technology Research.

The EIU ranking evaluated 68 countries and calculated results using 100 quantitative and qualitative indicators.


Taipei, Sept. 1 (CNA) Representatives from media watch and human rights groups urged the Taiwan media Friday to replace celebration with introspection on Journalist's Day amid a series of human rights violations perpetrated by the local media.

The media should respect interviewees' basic human rights and bring back news topics to the public domain, MWF President Kuan Chung-hsiang said in a press conference.

"The counterattack to the media, " described by Lee Ming-tsun, a professor of sociology at National Taiwan University, was set in motion by the incident in which Taiwanese Major League pitcher Wang Chien-ming announced that he would not allow any interviews by any Taiwan media, claiming that the local media seriously invaded his parents' privacy.

The public's growing disgust with the media was also what brought various groups to the joint press conference. Participating groups included the MWF, the Association of Taiwan Journalists, the People with HIV/AIDS Rights Advocacy Association of Taiwan, gay rights-advocating Gingin Books, and the Mental Rehabilitation Association of Taipei County.

"The media has the right to report, but that does not mean it can violate human rights, " Kuan said.

Representatives also lamented the Taiwan media's prejudice against sufferers of mental disease and homosexuals in its reporting.

"The situation has come to a point where anyone could be the next victim of the media's human rights abuses. It could be a 'somebody' like Wang Chien-ming or it could be a 'nobody' like you or me, " said Lee.


Taipei, Aug. 31 (CNA) Fueled by Taiwan's "Go South" policy and growing uncertainty in the China market, interest on the part of Taiwanese corporations when it comes to investing in India has increased vastly. Help from Taiwan's government will be vital for corporate access to India's market, forum participants said Thursday in Taipei.

There is so much the government of Taiwan can do to help corporations that are interested in -- but having difficulty -- investing in India, Sean Kao of the Market Intelligence Center (MIC) said in a forum that discussed boosting bilateral investments between Taiwan and India.

For Taiwanese corporations, investing in India is a problem of great complexity because there are different regulations and tax rates in 28 states and the language barrier issue, said Lin Shih-chia, Deputy Secretary-General of Taiwan-India Cooperation Council (TICC) -- the forum's organizer.

"The government can be a great help [for corporations], from setting up a one-stop service, shortening customs clearance to establishing a Taiwanese industrial park, " Kao said.

Taiwan is also keen on a free trade agreement (FTA) with India, said Eric Wu, General Manager of iSuppli Taiwan. Once accomplished, the FTA will also help Taiwanese businesses in India.

As Taiwanese businesses are more curious than ever about India, they should also deal with it cautiously, warned Kung Ming-yi, Vice President of the Taiwan Institute of Economic Research.

"The situation in India has been a little bit confusing for Taiwanese businesses. Because they see niches and difficulties at the same time, " Kung said.

"It is why I encourage all businesses that want to invest in India should take a good hard look in the mirror and ask themselves what they really want. Are you going there for Indian technology talents, making money in India market, or try to establish a base of production there? " Kung said.


Taipei, Aug. 31 (CNA) Vietnam provides the most stable investment environment in Southeast Asia for Taiwanese businesses, especially the personal computer sector, an analyst said Thursday.

Although Vietnam is still a communist country, it provides themost stable investment environment compared to other Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries, most of which are experiencing political unrest, said Linda Lin, a researcher at the Market Intelligence Center of the Institute for Information Industry.

Vietnam also boasts one of the best growth rates in gross domestic product and gross national income among the ASEAN nations.

"With the announcement of a new foreign investment policy in 2000 and the 2006-2010 national development plan in 2005, Vietnam is now a new 'hotbed' for foreign investment, " she said. And Taiwan is already the largest foreign investor in Vietnam.

Government agencies will be the driving force behind the Vietnam market, she said, as the Vietnamese government will be engaged in an upgrading period with projects such as e-government to embrace its "open door policy."

This is why northern Vietnam, where the capital city of Hanoi is located, will be a niche market for Taiwanese PC businesses, Lin predicted.

With Vietnam's membership in the World Trade Organization in sight, lower tariffs on information and communication technology equipment is also expected to provide another niche factor for Taiwanese PC businesses, Lin said.